Under the Dome

Organizing for Action advocates for minimum wage raise

A small group gathered Wednesday in downtown Raleigh to advocate for Congress to raise the minimum wage from $7.25 to $10.10 an hour.

Organizing for Action, a community organizing project, planned the event, which was held in Moore Square. A handful of attendees held signs that included “#raisethewage.”

Last week, President Barack Obama signed an executive order raising the minimum wage for federal contract workers to $10.10 an hour, an action he announced last month during his State of the Union address.

“I believe that if you work hard in America, you should have a decent wage,” said Jarius Page, a junior at Saint Augustine’s University and an intern for OFA.

The Congressional Budget Office released a report Tuesday that showed raising the national minimum wage to $10.10 would boost the earnings of 16.5 million workers, lifting 900,000 people above the poverty line. However, it would also reduce total employment by 500,000 workers.

“Rep. Holding, Sen. Burr – could they live on $7.25 an hour? There’s no way,” said Cheryl Ellis, the state coordinator of OFA, referring to Raleigh’s Republican Rep. George Holding and the state’s GOP U.S. Sen. Richard Burr of Winston-Salem.